One Month Contest

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One Month Contest

Post  adverseaffects on Fri Jan 27, 2012 3:33 am

Posted January 26th, the Challenge ends February 27th
Must be MORE than 5 pages to be valid (single spaced)


Since I'm making it, I am picking a winner Razz
I will not pick myself as the winner no matter what, but I will if no one else contributes, so please don't make me do that!

The challenge is:
Make an original work of fiction of whatever plot, theme, style you want, containing these elements
-a key
-a path
-a door
-a monster
-a friend
-a fountain
-a cup
-a chain
-a flower
-an empty building

GO
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Re: One Month Contest

Post  KindOfBlue06 on Sun Jan 29, 2012 10:52 pm

Challenge accepted, although I was reluctant at first because the elements didn't appeal to me, but I think I can work with something now. If it goes how I plan, it will be a good contender for 1st place!

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Re: One Month Contest

Post  adverseaffects on Sun Jan 29, 2012 11:15 pm

KindOfBlue06 wrote:Challenge accepted, although I was reluctant at first because the elements didn't appeal to me, but I think I can work with something now. If it goes how I plan, it will be a good contender for 1st place!

Ooh, what fire. Oh, and sorry the elements didn't appeal to you, bummer cause I tried to pick "archetypal" stuff that would appeal to the general mind but, maybe that's because archetypes appeal to me. How about a deal, next month YOU pick the elements for the one month challenge! Yeah!
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Re: One Month Contest

Post  KindOfBlue06 on Mon Jan 30, 2012 12:20 am

oh fuck, I never thought to look at it archetypally,but thats right up my alley! Hmmm, perhaps I should scrap my first work and plan a new course of action. and Deal!

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Re: One Month Contest

Post  Acey on Mon Jan 30, 2012 3:36 am

a monster EHHH? Seems like I can cook something up about that Smile

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Re: One Month Contest

Post  KindOfBlue06 on Wed Feb 01, 2012 10:47 pm

My monster will be the monster to end all monsters! WAUGHHHHHHH!!!

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Re: One Month Contest

Post  TheBikloptiKon on Wed Feb 08, 2012 3:03 am

Working on it now. Really have no idea where I'm going with this but I'm going to give it a shot.

It would be crazy if we all wrote the same story. I almost felt the words listed in the order they appeared told a story by themselves.
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Re: One Month Contest

Post  OpRise on Mon Feb 13, 2012 8:14 pm

I've got one and a half pages as of today. I thought I'd get down the road a bit before I posted that I was accepting the challenge, just in case I wimped out. But now, so I can't back out: I'm in! Feels good to be actually writing something. Rolling Eyes
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Re: One Month Contest

Post  KindOfBlue06 on Tue Feb 21, 2012 10:22 pm

how many words is 5 pages? I only use notepad for my stories so it goes on and on and on and I'm not sure how long or short it actually is. Help Adverse! Sad

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Re: One Month Contest

Post  princess82 on Wed Feb 22, 2012 1:45 am

KindOfBlue06 wrote:how many words is 5 pages? I only use notepad for my stories so it goes on and on and on and I'm not sure how long or short it actually is. Help Adverse! Sad

Almost 3,500 12 pt font single-spaced.

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Re: One Month Contest

Post  adverseaffects on Thu Feb 23, 2012 7:02 pm

Only four more days left guys!!

YOU CAN DO IT

also--- five pages is technically the limit, but we're all Ps here, so if your story is complete and beautiful I'm not gonna toss it just cause you didn't meet the requirement. Requirement. Psh. lol! Just have fun!
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Re: One Month Contest

Post  adverseaffects on Thu Feb 23, 2012 7:41 pm

oh and also-- when you have it finished you can post it here or on another thread somewhere, or just e-mail it to me, adverseaffects@gmail.com. Doesn't really matter Smile
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The Boy and the Beast by Oprise

Post  OpRise on Mon Feb 27, 2012 1:32 pm

I. Annabel

“Sometimes I wish I’d died instead.”

The flower gazes silently up at him, listening, warm. He averts his eyes. “I know that’s wrong of me to say.” Heaviness filters in with the breeze. “Why am I talking to a flower anyway,” his voice trailes off.

The flower draws his eyes back, like gravitational pull. Beauty waves through him. It’s inner circle of white, oval petals is framed by deep purple petals that taper at the end. It’s middle explodes upward with different lengths of yellow. The petals are different than most flowers: they extend at the base to form long, curved strands that dangle around the stem like graceful fish hooks. It stands alone, defiantly and elegantly arching upward through the cracked concrete.

Fish hooks. He presses his eyes tightly. A shiver courses through him as the vision of the blue-jeaned form snapping over the boat deck flashes behind his eyelids. He shakes his head roughly to dislodge the vision, and lays back against his pack.

Wooden planks are rotting above him in the unfinished, deserted building, but it is a fine shelter, the best he’s had in weeks. His eyes drift over discolored knots and even, parallel seams. The stillness and weight of the afternoon calm him into a light sleep.

His dream opens as it always does. He sits cross-legged on the boat deck, heat warming his thighs and the sun hot on his neck, despite the breeze. He hunches over an old fishing net the sun had stained a piss-colored yellow, his awkward hands rip away barnacles clinging to the ropes. Sweat stings his eyes and plops on the wooden deck. He passes the back of his hand over his brow and looks out over the ocean, deep blue dips and sun sparkles, like a vast and living carpet meeting the sky in all directions. His head drops back, and he breathes in blue and salt, letting his body tip and compensate with the rocking of the boat.

“Alejandro! Ven aqui! Come here!” His father’s voice jerks him to the present. He leaps up and tries to sprint front deck, but in the dream he can only run as if in water, slowly and in poor form. He scolds himself, tells himself to run faster. This is my chance to show Papa it was not a mistake to bring me along. I can be part of the crew. He struggles to move his legs faster, using his arms to help propel him forward.

The men come in view at the mast, huddled around the steel cage, heavy with lobster, grunting with the effort of hauling it over the high rails of the boat. His father wraps the thick chain around his forearm as he pulls, and the attending ropes snake over the deck, knotty and waterlogged. His father pulls from the back and the others are around the sides. Ale panics: they're hauling it up and he is missing everything! He puts all his attention on his legs, willing them to move faster, his knees pumping, but going nowhere.

Dread wormes in. I know this. I know what happens. Wide eyed, he looks up. Ale reaches out for his father with his arms, unable to move his legs forward. “No! Papa!” The boat lurches sharply and the heavy trap disappears back over the side of the boat, fingers slipping, curses. Time moves in slow motion as the chain flings his father’s torso toward the steel railing, his feet tripping on the ropes, unable to find traction. The cracking sound of his father’s ribs against the steel rail, the vibrations of the cage scraping down the side of the boat, the men grabbing and catching only air, his father’s feet swinging up and over - and then gone. Stunned silence, disbelief, denial.

“Papaaaaa!”

His body jumps awake, alert, thrashing in darkness. The dream becomes memory and he sinks back on the slab of concrete, tears wetting his temples and rolling into his hair and ears. He rolls over. With the moonlight can make out the shape of the flower. She is looking at him, soft petals bent toward him. The tips of his fingers skim the leaves, and he feels she is a friend.

“Annabel. I’m naming you Annabel.”

II. The Monster

Ale wakes once again to the sound of screaming, the tortured cries of a child invading his ears, piercing. Darkness closes in around him and a sharp pain stabs his spine between his shoulder blades. He cries out, his back arching up around the dagger of pain. Redness forms above him and he strains his eyes to make out the form.

Eyes. A growl, and a hot breath hits his face, his nose involuntarily crinkling and his face turning away as his limbs spring into action, propelling him back and scrambling up, stumbling backward and around and running, running away as fast as his legs can carry him. The dagger hits is back again, halting his progress and he stumbles, his feet still trying to move as his knees bend beneath him, his chest thrusting forward away from the pain, he loses balance, his palms barely breaking his fall and his nose and cheek scraping the concrete.

Silence. The screaming stops, the growling is gone, darkness all around. Something soft grazes his face, soft like petals.

Ale looks up, his eyes slowly adjusting to the darkness. It’s time to get moving.

He reaches back for his pack, and his trembling fingers root around for his tin camping cup. His fingers slip into the handle, and he crawls over to Annabel. “Would you come with me?” he asks hopefully. Her assent graces his mind in the form of a small release of anxiety, calming him. His hands carefully dig into the moist English soil. He transplants her into the cup, lifts his pack onto his shoulders, and stands. “Goodbye building. Thank you for your hospitality. I’m sorry about the monster.” He follows me wherever I go. The first deep purple of dawn peeks over the horizon as he tramps out into the dewy grass. Looking around, he heads into the forest. It’ll make a good shelter come nightfall.

III. The Farmer

“I like the wildness of the forest, Annabel.” Ale munches on raisins and biscuits, the midday sun finding its way through gaps in both the cloudcover and trees, warming his patch of ground by the creek. “I feel like an ancient Goth separated from his tribe, making my own way in the rugged land.” He smiles at the sound of this, but Annabel droops. He reaches over and cups his hands in the gentle current, scooping water for her and taking several droughts himself. “It’s not an easy life, but it’s mine,” he appraises her gently, looking for signs of understanding.

“My mother died giving birth to me. My father died on a fishing boat last year. I’m cursed. I’ll take care of you, though. I know you saw the monster last night....don’t worry, he only wants me.” Ale’s eyes scan the southern length of the creek. “My uncle was going to put me away in a loony bin.”

“We’re going to my uncle’s cabin at the southern edge of this forest. My father and I used to go there to hunt.” He pulls a key attached to a ring of twine out of his pack and puts in around his neck. The old fashioned skeleton key is heavy but comforting, the twine tickles the back of his neck. “I’ll plant you there, and you’ll feel better.”

They follow a deer path down creek all afternoon. Everything green is lush because of the spring rains, and dense growth leads them in wide zig zags over the forest floor. Ale’s jeans hang low around his waist: he tramples the back cuffs under the heels of his tennis shoes. Late afternoon brings in a drizzle, and pulls his hoodie further over his brow and keeps his eyes focused downward on his feet and the path directly in front of him. Greens and browns look so much richer on a rainy afternoon. His mind wanders to the seeds in his pack. “Annabel, you’ll love the soil at the cabin. It’s rich and good for growing. My father always said he’d retire there and grow all his own food, have some goats and chickens. We’re going to be ok.”

The night is quiet but uncomfortable. Ale perches Annabel’s cup in the crook of a tree trunk and slings his hammock up in the branches off the damp ground. Several layers of clothing keep him passably warm, but everything feels damp and cold. It was much warmer in Spain. He can barely remember it, he was so young, but his mind escapes the chill into memories of sunshine and picking wild strawberries in the clearing behind the house.

His father was angry then, always angry. Ale was excited the day his father announced they were moving to England to live with his aunt and uncle. They had a boy a few years older than Ale, who he’d visited once before and remembered fondly. There was a scraggly tree outside his uncle’s house they’d converted to a space ship. Flat places enabled them to sit between the twisted branches as if the tree foresaw the future when it grew. They hung bags of provisions on the knots protruding along the branches and had intergallactic battles with ARC-170 starfighters doing reconnaissance for the Death Star.

Arriving in England to live wasn’t what he’d hoped. Jessie was older and uninterested in playing with him, and kids at school avoided the Spanish-speaking stranger. Ale spent summer days alone in the spaceship while his father was out on fishing trips. There were no starfighters in the area anymore. Space was vast and silent, soothing. He strained his muscles exploring high-density planets and flew as close to stars as the ship could bear, blinded by their brilliant explosions and heat. One day he would travel into space for real, drifting in weightlessness and exploring forever.

***

“Time to go, Annabel,” Ale says as he stuffs the rolled up netting in his pack in the crisp morning light. “I think we’re going to reach the cabin today.” Her petals had perked up. “The sky and drizzle is better than those rafters, yes?”

Today’s zig-zag leads them to a sunny clearing with neat rows of lettuce and sugar beets. Ale falls to his knees and collects enough for lunch, rubbing beet bulbs on his shirt to wipe off the dirt and biting into them like apples, devouring them and taking bites of lettuce between bites, chomping hungrily.

“You there!”

Ale scrambles to his feet, the sound of heavy footfalls close behind him. He turns, an apology on his lips, stumbles backward. “Don’t walk on the beds, son.”

Ale jumped forward compliantly, instinctually. “Sorry..I..”

“You’ll be needing to work off that feast, my boy.” The old man’s eyes are authoritative but calm, and Ale nods in agreement. “That was about a 15 euro lunch you had there. Two hours should do it.” He scans Ale up and down. “But if you stay for the day you’ll get a hot dinner. Got to weed all these beds today and my back’s not what it used to be.”

Annabel perches on his pack while Ale weeds. He stays for the day, listening to the old man as they work down the rows. The farmer tells of floods and critters and markets and cold winters and building his farmhouse and his sons and daughter scattering to nearby cities. “What’re you doing out here in the middle of nowhere, a young man like yourself?”

“I’m headed to my uncle’s cabin, south a’ here. He hasn’t been in years. Going to live out there. Do some farming myself.”

“You’ll need a bit o’luck. Not easy work.”

“I mainly want to grow enough for myself.”

The old man exhales sharply and continues in silence for a long time. “Where’s your folks? Why aren’t you in school?”

“They’re both dead. And I graduated already,” he lies.

“Umm-hmm,” the farmer allows, not looking up. “When we get done with this row, you’ll want to get that bucket over there and collect all the weeds. I feed ‘em to the chickens. Makes right yellow yolks to feed ‘em greens.”

Ale feasts on biscuits and pork stew that night. John's wife seems unperturbed by his unexpected presence, re-filling his bowl twice, encouraging him to eat his fill. “John, have you offered the young man a bed for the night? Looks like you two worked hard today.”

He turns the knob to the quaint guest room as he closes the door, clicking it into the frame as quietly as possible. He sits delicately on the edge of the bed. “This is a good spot,” he whispers as he places Annabel and her cup on the bedstand next to a small blue-glass lamp. He unties and carefully places his muddy shoes in the corner and lays down fully clothed, covering himself with the down comforter. Heaven, this bed. Warm and soft. He curles on his side and dead sleep sweeps over him in minutes.

IV. The Tunnel

Ale wakes in an earthen tunnel running under dense foliage, screaming and dragon roars chasing him. Crawling furiously on the muddy floor, his head down to avoid entangling in low hanging vines, he bumps headlong into solid wood, the reverberation shivering down his spine.

Eyes squeezed shut, he pushes the wood in front of him, but the barrier doesn't give. His fingers search the edges frantically and close around a knob. He twists but it doesn't budge. He pushes and heaves his body against it to no avail. The beast's growls are flying toward him fast. Try the key. He grabs the twine around his neck and pulls the key out from beneath his shirt. His fingers guide the key toward the knob in blackness: it sinks into the keyhole and he twists it. The small door swings open and he crawls through. Slamming the door and pressing his back against it, his feet dig into the soil to block whatever onslaught chases him on the other side.

The beast slams against the door. He feels and then hears a crack against his back. He rips the twine off his neck and reaches back, turning the key in the knob. He reaches up to dig through the vines and crawl out, but they are thick and woody and their web is impenetrable. He scrambles forward.

The beast pounds the door. A loud crack, the wood splits in two. He glances back and the beast roars, it’s wolfish teeth barred and pressing through the crack in the door. In front of him only blackness, his knee snags a root weaving across the tunnel floor and he falls forward. This is it. This is the end.

Once more the beast slams into the door, busting through, red eyes set in the blackest black flying toward him. He falls back on his hands and crawls backward like a spider, screaming. It’s hot breath hits him and the weight of the beast crashes onto him, knocking out his breath, flattening him to the ground.

“Padre! Ayúdame!” he cries, “Help me, please.” Claws rip through his clothing, tearing at his chest as the full weight of the beast pounces on top of him. The darkness seeps in, his eyes roll back, unconsciousness taking him.

V. The Boy

Annabel watches the boy thrashing and crying in his sleep. He cries out, and she hears the farmer shuffling down the hall. The old man comes in and groggily nudges the boy, but sleep holds him fast. “Wake up,” he grumbles, shaking him. Ale exhales sharply and goes limp and silent. The farmer waits a minute and then heads back the way he came. “Oh, he’s alright, just a nightmare,” Annabel hears him tell his wife.

Annabel can't feel him breathing. She searches outward toward his mind, but there is a wall she can’t penetrate. She implores him to wake, but stir he does not.

***

Morning crawls into the small room slowly that morning. Sunshine inches up the comforter and caresses the boy’s still face.

Pans clank in the kitchen, and soon the smell of bacon and eggs wafts under the door into the room. “John, let him sleep".

“I could use his help planting the squash today.”

“Give him some time. He looks like he hasn’t eaten or slept properly in ages.”

“He carries that damned flower around. Weird kid. I reckon...”

“Shhh, John,” she hushed him, and whispers, “He could hear you.”

Annabel continues to search the wall around Ale’s mind and finds a small opening. She peers in and it is black and cold and utterly still. She can see him at the bottom, torn and laying awkwardly in the dirt. She calls out, but he does not stir. There is an empty stone fountain next to him, green with algae. She weeps silently, her tears welling into it. She lowers a chain into the opening until the end lies beside him. Wake up, she pleads, crawl out.

She leans over the edge of the his mind, watching him, tears plopping into the fountain. Waiting. White petals falling softly, caressing his face.
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A letter to the victim.

Post  KindOfBlue06 on Tue Feb 28, 2012 1:00 am

This story was incredibly hard for me to write. I struggled both with the elements that had to be in the story, as well as the dark subject matter. I treated it more as a character study and a lesson in point of view. Hopefully it touches you in some way. Anwyays, all the elements that were requried are there. So without further ado...

After making your way through the cafeteria, you sat down at a table by yourself and looked around timidly before burying your nose in the book you had been clutching against your chest. You seem so focused, so completely unaffected by the hurried commotion happening all around you, and when you finally did raise your head to glance around the room, you looked right in my direction, but you did not notice my fixed calculatnig stare upon you.

That was the first time I noticed you, and had I not been taking in all the details, I may not have seen you. But my eyes were not scanning the room out of mere bordeom -far from it. My heightened senses were of a more practical and urgent matter, for I was making sure that no curious wandering eyes took notice to what was happeing at the table I was sitting at; the money exchanging hands, and the passing of a small baggy of white potent powder into my hands which I quickly stashed away in the deep of my pocket.

It was unfortunante for you that no suspicion was rasied by some casual onlooker, and that no adults were notified because were that to have happeend, I surely would have been caught. The act of getting away with such crminal acts right under the noses of my unsuspectiong peers and the carefull eye of the faculty excited some strange part of me and only helped to further fuel my bulging ego. For the rest of the school day after having taken such a daring and foolish risk, I would saunter through the halls enveloped in an aura of invincibility and an unwavering belief that I was above all rules and regulations. This naieve confidence allowed me to take further risks and my beligerence and wrecklessness grew with each one that I got away with(or managed to weasel my way out of).

I'm not sure what exactly it was that I first was drawn to about you; but I knew I had to get to know you because -from afar at least, you seemed to be different not only from the other girls, but from me as well. You seemed pure, structured and clean in all the ways I was not. You seemed to be not of the world, but apart from it, whereas I was very much in it. You seemed to be the complete opposite of me, and I knew I had to have you. And I was used to getting what I wanted.

Since we had no classes together, I learned to observe you closely for the brief half hour we were together in the cafeteria. A half hour monday through friday added up to only two and a half hours per week where I could try to figure you out. Your name was the first mystery I wanted to solve, along with why you kept to yourself mostly. The answer to these questions aluded me for weeks untill finally I found an answer.

Upon telling my friend Jimmy of the mystery girl that occupied my thoughts every lunch hour, he informed me of some key details. He told me you were just a sophmore -two grades lower than me, and that your older brother had a friend who sometimes bought weed from him. This was just what I needed, and shortly after learning
this, I sought out that friend. His name was Kyle and he just happened to share two classes with you, much to my benefit and your eventual demise. I arranged it so that when he next went over to Jimmy's to buy his bi- monthly bag of weed, I would be there to smoke with him and find out the missing pieces of the puzzle I was putting togeher of you in my mind.

Soon enough the day came when he arrived at Jimmy's house to make a purchase, and after I got him high, he revealed to me another side of you -the whimsical yet studious presence you brought to the english class that he shared with you. He told me of the way you often seemed lost in your daydreams when you weren't doodling in your day planner and the way you played with your hair during a boring lecture. He said that when he did talk with you, you allways seemed warm and bubbly, but there was some deep longing that you had -one that he couldn't quite put his finger on. And then he surprised me by producing from his pocket a note from you and to him. Kyle was written on the front fold of the paper, and when I unfolded it, the looped girlish handwriting read as follows:

"Hi Kyle Smile
How's life?
I'm really bored right now. You messed up my do this morning -Don't touch the hair!
To kill a mockingbird is cool, and so are the beatles.
Scouts my favorite!
Bye Kyle
Sam

The purple ink in which in was written only enhanced the youthfull image I had of you in my head. But now I had a name to put to you, and not only that, I had enough information now to paint a more vivid picture of you. I had now only to find out a way to have you, and this was the beginning of my terrible scheme. The more I got to know Kyle and the more I got to know you through Kyle, I realized that it would be easy to become aquanited with you through our mutual friend and I slowly began to weave a web in which to trap you. I told him to bring you to a party that Jimmy's older cousin was having at his appartment, and there, I would introduce myself and begin to lure you out of your shell and into my world. And I was prepared to do it by whatever means it took.

The night of the party I arrived early, and made sure to keep a watchfull eye on the door to make sure I wouldn't miss your entrance. After the first hour I began to think you wouldn't show, and the cocaine made me all the more hot and edgy. When you arrived at last, and I finally was introduced to you, I became aware of things I couldn't have picked up from the distance which I was used to studying you from. Though you wore no makeup, your face had the immaculate glow of of youth and the blonde hair that cupped your face made you look almost angelic. The baby fat you had yet to shed was made noticable by the exposed parts of your arms, and hinted at by the unexposed parts of yourself, namely your full breasts which you hid most of the time under your white hooded sweatshirt. You were wide eyed as you looked around the room at the tattoed crowd, the drugs on the table, and the unseen sex that was going on behind closed postered doors. I could tell immediately that the scene in which you had now found yourself in unnerved you. My world was a much different world than the one you were used to. Kyle had told me that you seemed to want to experience new things, but I don't think you had any idea what you were getting yourself into by comming to that party. I knew you would eventually succumb to the peer pressure that was thick in the air, and that's exactly why I had Kyle bring you there. Once everyone found out you hadn't even smoked weed before, they made sure you took a hit of the blunt that was being passed around. What they didn't tell you about was the opium I had Jimmy lace it with, and once you were good and high and your inhibitions lowered, I suggested we go for a little joy ride, fuck around in the city for a bit and maybe do some urban exploring. To my surprise, you agreed. I grabbed the keys from the table, grabbed some road beers for us, and walked you out to my car. I told Kyle I would take you home, that he didn't have to worry about it. Friends told me later, that Kyle was very nervous about that, though he didn't say anything to me(no one dared challenge me), and they told me that he even tried to talk you out of comming to that party alltogether. You should have listened to your friend.

The lights of the city blurred by us as I sped through the darkened streets. You didn't say much and I couldn't tell if it was because you were high or nervous or what. I didn't care anyways. After throwing my empty beer out the window, I offered you a hit of a roach I had in the glovebox. You took it and thanked me.
"Where exactly are we going?" You asked me.
"There's this abandoned building I want to show you. It has some really sick graffiti. We're almost there." I said as I drove to the gloomy outskirts of the sleeping city. I made sure to park a little bit away from the entrance to the building incase any cops drove past so they wouldn't be suspicious of my parked car. Quietly and carefully, I led you through the cut hole in the chainlinked fence that surrounded the gutted building. I stepped inside before you and stood not moving, not making a sound, but listening for any sign of life; footsteps, the creaking of boards, the rustling of trash that lay in heaps on the cement floors, but no sound came. I signled you to come in and follow my lead.

I felt tense, and a wave of apprehension came over me as I thought about what I was about to do. I wasn't quite sure I could go through with it, and it scared me far more than whatever unseen dangers might lie in wait for us in the darkened rooms of the abanonded structure. Even upon entering that old shell of a warehouse, and feeling the cold weight of steel in my pocket as we crept up the stairs to the roof, even then I wasn't sure that I would have the balls to go through with it. I had never done anything that sinister before. Oh, I had done my fair share of trouble making to be sure; drugs, thefts, break ins, vandalism, assualts ect. But this was to be a whole new ballgame. And you were to be my first, as I was to be yours. It's ironic how that worked out, isn't it?

When we finally reached the roof, you looked around nervously and I could tell that the drugs were beginning to wear off of you.
"Where is it -that grafiti you were going to show me?"
"It's around here somewhere" I said, beggining to stall for time.
"Well lets find it soon. This place is starting to creep me out."
"We'll find it, don't worry. Just relax."
"I'm serious, this place is starting to scare me. Let's get out of here."
A long moment went by when I didn't say anything but kept looking at you.
"What? What is it?"
"Sam... there is no grafitti."
I reached into my pocket and when you saw what emerged you began to scream.


****

I knew you wouldn't report me. I knew your weaknesses, and your fears, but more importantly, I knew how to break you, and that's exactly what I did that night in the warehouse. I was, if you ask me, guilty of a far worse crime however -the high mortal sin. I confess it now. I did write a confession, an apology of sorts shortly after the incident and it read something like this:

Your honor, lock me up and throw away the key for I am guilty as charged. I have killed her, that sweet Samantha, that sweet blonde innocent little darling. I have killed her and I alone know where her body lies. It lies in pieces on the roof of that dilapitated building deep in the bleak heart of this rotted city. My fate is sealed your honor, twenty five to life. But please forgive me, judge and jury, family and frieds alike, for I am deeply sorry for the pain I have caused to the victim, the family, the school. Please find it in your heart of hearts to forgive this murderous act. Please, this I beg of you.

I may have sent it to the authorites had any part of it been true and sincere, but it wasn't, and I don't think you would have found it at all believable to begin with. Although I did not pay for what I did to you, I was convicted later for the same crime against another woman, and that time the consequences were quite severe.

The first six months behind bars, no one really came to visit me too much, and It wasn't untill Jimmy came to see me one day that I began to dream of you. He came by to tell me what life was like on the outside. He told me of the descent into drugs and sex that followed your depression after our fatefull night together. He told me how you cut your hair short and began wearing black clothes, nailpolish and hair dye. He told me how you became restless in school and often lashed out at teachers and your fellow classmates. What shocked me most however was the fact that you had run away and had been declared missing for the past five and a half months. Rumors were that you were living with a pimp somewhere on the west coast, but these were just rumors and couldn't be verified.

It was shortly after his visit, that you began to frequent my dreams. Those nights you haunted me in my nightmares and I was allways hoping deep down that no matter what your condition or circumstance, that you were still alive and breathing somewhere, anywhere; for I had a strange and constant fear that your ghost would
come back to make the rest of my days a dark and dreary hell. Perhaps it was that constant uncertainty of your whereabouts and well being that fueled the vivid terrors that plagued me nightly. Each evening, when I shut my trembling lids out of pure exhaustion, the same dream came to me. The same hazy apparition beckoning me out of sleep, into a dark garden of night, where a path lay between rows and rows of blooming flowers, their bulbs dancing in a chilled breeze. Your glowing figure summons me down this path to a fountain and in my hand there is a cup. Drink you tell me and I go to fill it from the fountain, as I see you do. I drink fromt the cup then pass it to you, but when you go to fill it the fountain runs dry. The stone cracks and begins to crumble, the flowers wilt and shiver. And the green flecks of your eyes become the black hollow sockets of a wormy corpse , crying tears of blood. You speak to me in a strange and foreign toungue and in my fright I run back down the path, only to have it swallow me up in the dead vegetation that flanks both sides of it.

And some nights when I awoke screaming and in a cold sweat of fear, I would rouse my fellow cellmates who, after repeated instances of my waking them, inquired to know the exact nature of my dreams. After much evasion and beating around the bush on my part, I finally caved and told them the subject of my nightmare along with the details and circumstances that spawned it. The grave and brutal nature of my offence was one that they did not take kindly to, and upon knowing the exact nature of my anxieties, and the hidieuos crime which was their source, they began to shun me. The glances, and whispers among themselves were signs of their plotting my demise, I was sure of it. But you will be pleased to know, dear Samantha, that not long afterwords, I took some of the worst beatings I've ever recieved in my life at the hands of those brutes. One of the beatings was so severe in fact, that I remained in a wheel chair for well over a week afterwords.

Oh Samanta you died that night in the warehouse. You died, and yet no one was in attendance at your funeral. There was no service, no wake, no flowers. Not because a casket housing the beaten body of a young girl was to be lowered six feet beneath the green sod of spring, but because you had to die a second and third death. You had, Samantha, to die five deaths, ten deaths, ten thousand deaths. For each time you cried and whimpered yourself into a restless sleep, you surely died. Each and every time, you surely thought of me as well. And in your deep rot of death, so you withered away in squalor and pain. And finally, when you could no longer take the ravages and darkness that became your sad life, you did something quite the opposite, something even I did not expect. You ressurected yourself from a bleak chasm of hopelessness and you were as they say "born again."

Your sudden shift from such despair to such devoutness intrigued and baffled me much in the same way as when I first knew you. I found out about your conversion to Christianity and your acceptance of a personal savior through Jimmy. I half expected you to try and forgive me, but what I did not expect was your unanounced visit to see me -to forgive me in person. It had been some time since I'd seen you last and you seeemd both familiar and transformed. You had grown into your body more, and you looked more like a woman than a girl, and there was still some fragile part of you that somehow remained intact. You did your best to hold back tears upon seeing me, and the whole interaction felt like it went on forever. In a sense we had both changed in some way, both grown from what had happened between us. You finally found the strength to be sure of yourself and who you are -the deep inner conviction you lacked before meeting me. I on the other hand, found only a sick sense of pride.

When I looked at you that day from behind the thick glass, I saw the same incorruptable flesh and the angelic gleam that I had years ago worn down and tarnished. I saw the same ruined pieces of a statuette I had both erected and destroyed. And I knew that for every piece of you that had to die in order for you to be born again, they could all trace themselves back to the first death that night on the roof. The origin of all your deaths from here to your last and final death, was one of my doing. For you would not be the pious woman you are today were it not for my heinous crime. Devil, you may call me. Thief, and murderer. But you will allways know, deep down inside that I am the one responsible for both your greatest pains and your greatest joys. And in that way, Samantha, we remain bound for ever and ever. Untill death do us part.

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Re: One Month Contest

Post  adverseaffects on Tue Feb 28, 2012 5:31 pm

Wow, you guys! These look really good. I want to take time to read them with full attention and seeing as I'm in class right now, the winner will be announced tonight at midnight. Exactly.
I'll also be posting mine for kicks by requets of blue, but it won't be considered for the running.
Good job to both of you by surmounting the deadline quandry.
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Monstermonster

Post  adverseaffects on Wed Feb 29, 2012 1:32 am


My monster is charming in the morning, skin falling about the place, picking lives out of its hair.
“Where did you go last night?” I ask. The bed was empty and for once smelled like clean sheets as opposed to something spicy and morbid.
My monster looks up, coffee cup dangling from a pinky mad-cap-like. “Bellevue!” Teeth split from a seam in its mouth, jagged cartoon shark fixtures that mesh together to form a porcelain wall of white.
Bellevue; so the insane asylum.
“What nonsense have you stirred up, hmm?” I pet its head. Goo sticks to the palm of my hand when I draw it away.
“Gill, that’s fucking gross, it’s not a pet,” Lindsey snaps from where she sits on the counter, scarfing cereal. MonsterMonster giggles.
“Respect my individuality, Gill, I’m a person toooooo,” and suddenly it’s wearing Gandhi’s face. I wince and look down at my newspaper. Wicked sense of humor, my monster has. The form is manifested on whims, but since MonsterMonster is in a good mood today, energy swishing intensely in its space case, the form is having a hard time sticking. The teeth melt into little doll molars, granite castles, pebbles on a beach, white doves, moving in lop-sided wet water motion-
“Stop it! You’re making me sick,” I bite out, lurching away from the table. My head is spinning from taking in a moving rosarch test. “Would you like some more coffee?” Drinking coffee calms it down. Monster can’t drink coffee, it splashes down its vertebrate and throw it’s transparent rib cage like a water tumbler in cascades of bitter-brown, but coffe calms it down nonetheless.
So we drink coffee together in the morning, slow sip by sip in-between silence and conversation: the American couple, newspaper in hand. I read politics, looking for hypocrisy and breaking ideals. Monster prefers the obituaries. The more dark ones earn a chuckle, a bemused smile for family photos and posed senior shots. It’s a nasty monster, laughing at misfortunes, not out of cruelty but out of a delicious sense of irony that even the commonplace makes it laugh. Apples make it laugh, cartoons and shopping carts, technology and news casts and even fiction, and this bothered me maybe a little, even love poems, make it shake it’s mocking Cheshire cat head. Monster just lives off of the little fixtures we use to prop up everyday life.
I will admit, I am attracted to such cavalier disregard. I can’t tell if it’s wanton destruction or Monster really knows something about life that I don’t, but I’ve let it stick around the past fifteen years, and I suppose I plan on letting it stick around another fifteen till forever until I find out, since after all, I really do suspect the shadow being that has no right to live pretending to sip coffee pinky up in my kitchen must mean something about life and death.
I’m always looking for answers.
“That’s why you’re an easy target.” It turns lamplike eyes on me. Its face has hollowed out into the shape of a deep-sea dweller, ghastly fangs sticking angular out of it’s mouth. I make a face. “Heeheehee,” it giggles, up-ending in its seat, kicking little girl feet in the air. “Hey! Don’t throw out the rest of the grounds, I want some more!” It whines, sitting up-start abruptly. Its original cup sits untouched on the table.
I sigh and replace the soaking filter and pour more water into the machine.
It smiles over crossed creature of the lake hands, webbed and fine, kiddish with glee. “With sugar, please.”
Is it not charming?

My girlfriend does not approve of my monster. She thinks we have an unhealthy attachment.
“It follows you to the bathroom, Gill,” she murmurs urgently, “And sometimes it slobbers on me. It leaves messes everywhere. Whenever things are going good for us it has to distract you from me and command all your attention! Can’t you see, it feeds of your energy and attention? Can’t you see what it’s doing to us?”
“You know it can hear even if you whisper right? I don’t think he has a cochlear or anything, he just hears you… ” Lindsey tightened her lips at the affectionate tone in my voice and I trailed off.
“Of course, I know that, why would a monster need to reproduce?”
“Oh. No. It’s got that stuff. Cochlear are in your ear.” Aren’t they? “For like. Vibrations and stuff.”
“It’s got junk, that’s messed-” Her voice is high and hysterical before she forces herself to calm down. She takes a moment to collect herself, then levels me with a deadly stare. “Gill. Please. I don’t want to talk about monster cochlear. I don’t want to talk about cochlear. I want to make sandwiches and have babies and stay in and cuddle and I’m tired of subverting us to you and your monster. And,” she pauses, as though thinking, and she words her next words carefully, “I don’t have to. “
Oh.” I say, dumbfounded.
“Oh! I’m not saying-- not yet! Not ever, hopefully. But, I will…. If I have to.” Her eyes are watering. “Please don’t make me? And… I need you to commit to the path you want in your life right now. Monsters or human beings.” ”
“Lindsey, don’t you think you’re being kind of harsh? I’ve been his best friend for fifteen years. I don’t even think this should be up for discussion.”
“No, Gill, I don’t think it’s harsh! I don’t think it’s harsh because you’re right, we shouldn’t be having this discussion! Never did I ever want to argue about whether or not it is within the rights of my boyfriend to house a monster first and a girlfriend second!”
“Wait, you’re jealous of him? Lindsey, that’s ri-”
“IT GOES OR I GO!”
At some point, you have to let old chains go. Monstermonster was my friend from childhood, a necessary evil, but I didn’t need him anymore. And it was time for him to go home. I found the key to the monster hutch and I tossed it outside into the dying flower patch. It was still bloody from me pulling it out of the meat bank.
MonsterMonster ambled from the bathroom where it had been making experiments turning all my soaps into explosives, an odd, perplexed look on its face. It turned to look at me directly with widening, hurt lamp-like eyes, before it vanished into shadow, sucked out of my open door like a gust of wind called back to the Devil.
I wouldn’t tell you this, but for the sake of the story, I think I started crying.

Later that night, Lindsey stitched up the key-shaped hole in my heart. “I didn’t realize he was buried so deep in you,” she told me.
“Yeah,” I sighed, and maybe more tears were falling onto her knuckles.
“But I see it now,” she said, and she kissed me.
A million living daisies for Lindsey, I thought, a million roses, daffodils, and as I opened my eyes into the kiss, ready to tell her, would you like a ring, would you like a wedding in a fountain in the downtown square, would you like to make a baby, right now, shadow skewed across the walls and I saw MonsterMonster struggling to take shape, little hands and eyes bulging along the barriers I had manifested in the wall.
Fresh blood poured from the stiches in my heart. “Oh!” Lindsey gasped and drew away from my mouth, “Oh! Oh! It’s back!” Blood was spilling at such a rate it had stained her white shirt in violent smears. She got up and tried to stop the bleeding, tried to clean up the mess with rags, change her shirt, but it kept coming sporadically and strong throughout the night.
She looked so disappointed, because we both knew the key was trying to grow back, and I didn’t have the heart to stop it. When I saw MonsterMonster struggling along the plaster in the walls, I wanted to grab it by the hand, I wanted to pull him close, I wanted to apologize.
Lindsey and I lay up, staring at the ceiling, side by side but not touching. Tears rolled down her cheeks. She was dangerously close to losing me and we both knew it.

I was haunted by its presence, and I had never realized how integral it was before. I figured if I was to keep Lindsey I better fill her in on the whole story.
MonsterMonster came to me through a door. I drew the door with my heart in a time of need.
I was twelve in my empty room, with my father threatening my mother outside.
I couldn’t escape, and I wasn’t prepared to leave my mother behind. Someone had to fight.
And I couldn’t win. I wasn’t strong enough to win.
Do you know, Lindsey, the toll, losing takes on you? It makes you doubt. It wears you down like rocks, Lindsey. It makes you despair. A child should be allowed to win some. I needed someone to help me, Lindsey, to be on my side.
My father liked to throw things, like to yell like a spoiled child in the body of a man, liked to hit.
And I started to fantasize, Lindesy, started to think, what if I could impose my will on him the same careless way he did to me? What would I do? Driving in the car, I had the startling vision of beating him with my palms against the window pane. I almost did it.
And that was even worse, once I started catching myself acting on it, Lindsey.
I needed someone else to do it for me. I didn’t want to become a monster too.
Monstermonster came through the door, and his bleeding heart beat through his ribcage so Father could see the hurt it caused him. Monstermonster came with me everywhere I went, and was my silent, snarky supporter, because I could hear his deafening carelessness, and took strength in it. Monstermonster doesn’t care if you die, if you live, if you win or lose. Monstermonster taught me about total confidence, and while he was nearby, I could sometimes, if I closed my eyes just right, be Monstermonster just enough to win. To drown out father, to fight back, to surprise the enemy with a frightening willingness to go do with the ship.
But monstermonster didn’t go away after the fight was over. He followed me to my room and he told me the things I need to hear.
Monstermonster sat on the couch in holy righteousness. “Isn’t that hypocritical of him?”
“Yeah!”
“He doesn’t even know you!”
“Yeah!”
“You’re better than him!”
“Yeah!”
And when I went to sleep? Who do you think it was that held me, Lindsey? You think it was a girl? You think it was you?
I was embraced in the stink of my own rotting heart, Lindsey, and it was such a security to me. And I’ve kept him with me to this day. It’s hard to lock him out, hard to deny him, because we both know he is the one who saved me when I needed it most, and I owe him… don’t I?
Lindsey bit her lip. “You don’t owe your own creations a thing but less concern, Gill.”

Hot skin, folding into nothing, dark abyss-
“Haah, yeah, right there-” oh gross. “Don’t turn into Gerard Butler again, I don’t know why you do that, it weirds me out,” I frowned.
“It’s cause you’re scared of him,” monstermonster mutters, “Can’t help it, it gets incorporated in, as does helplessness. It twists on top of me, hot cavern mouth, “Tell me,” it melds to me, “Do you feel helpless?”
Ah. “Hahhh… yes…” I close my eyes.
The door opens. Light spills across us. Monstermonster dissolves. I am alone in bed a make-shift puppet made out of dark blankets and a mop for a spine structure caressed in my arms. I am eating the threads of fabric used for cleaning.
Lindsey burst into years, but she does not look away. I wish I would have looked away, but I did not, and I did not put the mop down.
“Gill,” she cried. “Gill.” And she wiped her face with her hands. “ You promised.”
“Lindsey,” I said, “Please send me to Bellevue. I don’t think I even knew what I was promising.”



Thus commenced the power struggle with me and my monster, and it’s been going on till this very day. Lindsey sold the house, but no one will buy it, she told me on one of her visits. It’s empty, an empty building, the place we so care-takingly decorated. I told her that, and she looked taken aback.

“Gill, it was covered in black paint. All the time, you’d slosh black paint and sand everywhere. Don’t you remember?”

I wasn’t thinking, but I told the truth and told her no, and she dissolved into tears.
She doesn’t visit that much anymore, though she did at first. I think the fact that nothing has changed, even after being locked up, has made her realize I was never a whole man, and never will be. Think it’s scared her away. I wonder…..
Darknes wraps its arms around my shoulders. “Stop wriiiiting. No one is going to read it. Come back to bed, babyyyyy.” I melt into familiar arms, though not loving, safe. I let the pencil drop from my hand. You must admit, it has a certain charm.
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adverseaffects

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Picking A Winner--- and it goes to~~~

Post  adverseaffects on Wed Feb 29, 2012 2:39 am

Kindofblue!! Congratulations!

I was really intrugiued by both your works, and it made it really hard to choose as both were excellent in different ways.

To OPRise-
the shift in perspective between the boy and the flower, and the way you blended the present and past, was seamless and really gave the story it's character. One of my favorite parts is when the flower is searching for his mind and finds a small chink to find the boy... very interesting visual. And, the fact you gave the flower the power of narrative at all was really cool, bceause I was seeing it as evidence of the boy's split from reality, but you kind of redeemed him and gave the story a "magical reality" vibe.

To kindofblue-
What was interesting about yours was how direct it was written. The way the piece read like a very, very personal letter and addressed to "you" the entire time. You understand it isn't just about a past victim, it is to and for someone pivotal to his existence. Actually, at first I thought he wanted to marry her, then killed her, then I realized he raped her... it's interesting to me, the reality of character you gave Sam. And it's interesting to me how he romanticized those characteristics, worshipped them, and also destroyed them... but I think he was secerely vindicated that she survived them and remained "angelic" in his eyes. Also interesting was while reading yours, I barely noticed how you slipped in the elements, besides the fountain, because you did it so sneaky and smooth-like. I could not tell you were writing for my prompt, but merely writing as Mr. Rapist.

These were both really good, I'm actually really embarrassed about mine now, but I knew I wasn't gonna win so I kinda half assed it (excuse, excuse hahaha).

I picked blue to be the winner because of the unique point of view that drew me in from the start to finish and the way the required elements were incorporated in. A more clear theme was present in blue's and as a piece stands better alone while OP's didn't seem quite finished or perhaps "fleshed out". However, the beauty of OP's language and use of magical reality and metaphor is still clear.

Congrats to Kindofblue, first place, and OPRise, second place, and me, third place (lol) by default!!!!

In reward.... Blue gets to assign the next contest terms, though he was gonna get to anyways.
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Re: One Month Contest

Post  OpRise on Wed Feb 29, 2012 9:24 pm

This was fun Smile Thanks for posting it! I had the same feeling, that it was a bit unfinished...I never 'saw' the monster for some reason, although there were elements I really liked about Ale and the flower. It was great to be writing! It's the longest fiction I've ever written Smile

Congrats KindofBlue.. enjoyed your story a lot, and same to you Adverse - I really liked the way you worked the elements in fantastically, more like archetypes. Look forward to next month's challenge!

I like the way this writer's group is going, and I'm so glad to be here.

Smile Op
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Re: One Month Contest

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